Beyond Bestsellers: Nonfiction For People who Think They Hate Nonfiction

​By Kaley C.

I always thought I hated nonfiction. I’d try to read it on my lunch breaks or after work, but found myself unable to focus and suddenly in need of a nap or snack. I kept choosing books I felt would be interesting subjects, but still couldn’t sit down and read anything like when I read fiction.

Eventually, during a heck of a commute on I-5 a few years ago, I thought perhaps listening could work. Listening to nonfiction felt like I was a silent participant in a conversation instead of reading the longest news article in the world. The change in format coupled with the creative aspect of narrative nonfiction held my attention unlike any of my other previous attempts. I eventually added nonfiction graphic novels to my book lists and can’t seem to put them down, either.

Audiobooks

Adnan's StoryI loved Sarah Koenig’s podcast, Serial. It covered the story of Adnan Syed who was convicted of murdering his girlfriend in 1999, but ardently proclaimed his innocence. Rabia Chaudry has been an advocate for her friend since his arrest and reviews his investigation, progress in court (up until publication), his life in prison, and the American justice system in this book.

 

 

 

Lafayette in the Somewhat United StatesWhen you select a book written by a historian, you may not be expecting something so engaging and funny but Sarah Vowell​ pulls it off. This audiobook is read by her, and celebrates our famous historical players as people with flaws. Marquis de Lafayette was considered a war hero after the Revolutionary War, but hadn’t set foot in the country since it was won. Vowell details his tour across the 24 States and territories as he is reunited with America.

 

 

 

Patient H.MHenry Molaison went into an operating room hoping a lobotomy would help him with his epilepsy but left with amnesia. His brain is one of the most studied in medical history.

 

 

 

 

 

Graphic Novels

Relish Guys, I can fangirl over Lucy Knisely any day. I love all of her work so far and this is no exception. Raised to celebrate and enjoy delicious food, Lucy literally illustrates how it shaped her life through many lessons and good meals. Bonus recipes included!​

 

 

 

 

The Best We Could Do

Thi Bui’s family escaped war-torn South Vietnam in the 70s to rebuild their lives in America. Bui explores how this had long-lasting effects on her and her family in this beautifully illustrated book.

 

 

 

Check out the rest of the list here.

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Comments

One response to “Beyond Bestsellers: Nonfiction For People who Think They Hate Nonfiction”

  1. “Listening to nonfiction felt like I was a silent participant in a conversation instead of reading the longest news article in the world.”

    This is EXACTLY my experience. I do so much better with non-fiction on audio.

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